Profile picture on facebook is, at present, this turtle! Why?
The immediate reason is silly - there was a facebook conversation about a red panda... Anyone making comments had animal profile pictures... And that became the "rule"... So... I changed to using a turtle in order to make comments on the red panda! That sounds so daft now that you see it in print. It made more sense at the time!
But why a turtle?
Years ago when I was teaching in Kilkeel I kept the little cute terrapin. They aren't the easiest of pets and it is hard to get the conditions just right to prevent them getting soft shells and all the other diseases they contract. And they do carry other health risks themselves - salmonella being high on the list. So, the last of the little critters died and they weren't replaced - the heater and tank lie disused in the shed now.
But during that time a collection of stuffed toys, models, earrings and so on began to accumulate. There are over 300 items in the house that all have turtle/tortoise links. These range from cast iron stepping "stones" to fragile glass representations. Some stay permanently in the china cabinet - among them are the chocolate turtle from Paris this past Easter and a silver one. There are jigsaws in the shape of turtles and the Christmas Tree ornaments are many and varied. I have a salt and pepper set in china and both silver and brass paper weights. Just last Sunday I was given a pair of silver earrings from Camden Market! They join a collection that includes gold, silver, enamel, wood and even tortoise shell earrings.
Some day I may even put part of the collection together and take photographs - that would make for an interesting album. Interesting for me anyhow. Children love to go round the house spotting the turtles and inevitably miss a teatowel, pot stand, picture or nail brush... I even did a talk recently, at the Ladies Guild, about tortoises and turtles.
The strange thing is - Eliot never touches any of them. He seems to know what is "dog toy" and what isn't; though I'd not give much for the chocolate one's chances if he managed to get near it. He is the neatest food thief that I know with the ability to "suck" ham out of a sandwich and leave the tomato behind!
So that's why, if you look on facebook, my profile picture is a green turtle!